The Forsyth County Superior Court has charged a local man with homicide by vehicle for allegedly killing one person and seriously injuring another while driving under the influence of GHB in 2018.
Brandon Anthony Schneider, 27, was indicted on Monday, June 10, for charges of homicide by vehicle, serious injury by vehicle, driving under the influence, reckless driving, driving on wrong side of roadway and use of improper tires.
According to authorities, Schneider is accused of being the driver at fault in a head-on collision on Canton Highway, which killed 87-year-old Connie Mack “Doc” Lathem and injured Bunia Lathem on July 19, 2018.
According to Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office spokesman, Cpl. Doug Rainwater, at noon on July 19, 2018, deputies began receiving 911 calls that a 2002 Lexus GS300 was traveling down Canton Highway driving on the wrong side of the road and appeared as if the driver was not in control.
Shortly after, they began receiving calls that two vehicles on Canton Highway had collided head-on, just east of Bethelview Road.
In a Sheriff’s Office news release from the incident, Rainwater stated that the Lexus
was traveling west on Canton Highway when the vehicle crossed over a painted yellow median and struck a 2013 Chevrolet Cruze, driven by Connie Lathem, traveling east on Canton Highway.
The occupants of both vehicles were taken from the scene to local hospitals, where Connie Lathem was later pronounced dead. Bunia Lathem and Schneider were treated for serious but non-life-threatening injuries, authorities said.
At the time of the wreck, Rainwater said that due to how the events unfolded, Schneider was investigated by the Sheriff’s Office’s Traffic Specialist Unit as a possible DUI driver.
Recently filed indictment documents allege that at the time of the wreck, Schneider was under the influence of GHB.
GHB is an addictive prescription drug, commonly known as a “club drug” or “date rape drug,” which reportedly causes hallucinations, euphoria and drowsiness, according to information from the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Schneider was taken into Sheriff’s Office custody on March 22, 2019, but was later released from the Forsyth County Jail under a bond of $39,455.
Previously in 2015, Schneider was found guilty of possession of oxycodone and possession of drug-related objects in the Forsyth County Superior Court.
According to Forsyth County District Attorney Penny Penn, he was sentenced to four years of probation for these charges. Penn said that after the sentencing, his probation was revoked several times and he was sent to the State Probation Detention Center for 180 days.
Schneider’s attorney Peter Zeliff declined to comment.